A Grain of Salt

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In my last post, I opened the floor to you to ask some questions about body-image, weight, and eating topics that you wanted to explore. Firstly, thank you for having the courage to ask these questions because I know that is hard to do! Trust me, sometimes I get bashful before writing a post and want to crawl under my desk with a blanket over my head and hide.

Kinda like now.

But, I’ll be brave because you were brave. :)

I was a bit overwhelmed with how many questions I received, so I tried to pick out reoccurring themes and address the ones I felt that I could offer my experiences. What works for me may not work for you so please take what I say with a grain of salt and always see a professional before making any changes in your own life. Oh, and you might want to talk to your mom about that Tattoo you are planning. She brought you into this world and she can take you out!

Self-Love & Acceptance

How do you learn to start loving yourself, just as you are?

I’ve been asked this many times before and the question always leaves me feeling like I didn’t answer it properly. I think the reason why this question always tripped me up in the past is because I thought it implied that I just flipped a switch and instantly loved myself one day. And that was certainly not the case. It took me a long time to build a positive relationship with myself.

Because I had so many negative behaviours going on in my life (such as, negative self-talk, poor body image, disordered eating and exercise behaviours), I had to change those behaviours before I could ever learn to love myself. Only when I addressed those negative behaviours and started to eliminate them from my life, was I able to grow as a person and slowly but surely allow positive thoughts and behaviours to replace them. I do not think self-love can grow from a negative place. You have to create a positive place for it to flourish and was crucial for me to address those inner demons first. I did this through therapy initially, supplementing with things I learned in psychology courses.

Binge-Eating & Calorie Counting

How did you initially begin to deal with your issues of binge eating? Did you have to cut out certain foods from your diet for some time? If you ever slipped up, were you able to stay positive? And if so, how? Do you have advice from stopping binging and overeating permanently? How long did it take to feel as though you had control of yourself around food, and how did you resist the urge to binge? 

How did you learn to not count calories even though you already knew the calorie content of most foods? Out of all the progress I’ve made in my own recovery, I still find calorie counting hard NOT to do. I’ve gotten much better at avoiding it, but sometimes I find myself counting up my day before I even realize it.

It sounds counterintuitive, but I was able to beat binge eating by letting go and not restricting myself. For so many years, I thought I could beat binge eating by being more rigid and controlled, but that only made the problem worse. I would often think, ‘Ugh I need more self-control!’, but more control was the last thing I needed.

I needed freedom. Binge eating, for me, was my body rebelling from too much restriction and control.

I used to try a ‘cheat day’ once a week to prevent binge eating. That just did not work for me. I realized that I can’t deprive myself all week and then expect to have a normal and controlled cheat day. My body would rebel against me and I would often end up bingeing, only to start the starve-binge cycle all over again on Monday. I remember the emotional highs and lows it caused me and it further reinforced the lack of balance in my life. Plus, I hate the notion that one is ‘cheating’ when eating certain foods. What works for me now, is to have a treat every single day that I look forward to. I’m not ‘cheating’, but simply enjoying decadent food in moderation.

How did I stop binges after failing so many times? I had to stop counting calories and restricting my intake. I counted calories for about 10 years of my life and I never thought I could stop the habit. It took me about 6-12 months before I fully stopped counting calories. I would try to start very small, such as not counting calories for a snack, rather than overwhelm myself and going cold turkey. I had to make baby steps because it was extremely hard to stop and I found myself doing it automatically.

I still struggled with binge eating for about 1 year after I stopped counting calories and restricting my intake. I was so frustrated about this. Here I was eating healthy portions, yet I was still bingeing! I felt like I was never going to be able to eat normally again and I relapsed into my old ways a few times, but thankfully I stuck with it.

It took me a long time to get back to a place where I could eat normally and not have old habits creep up. It was about 1 year before I was able to stop bingeing and eat more intuitively. My best advice is to stick with it, seek professional help, and be patient. Eventually, you will re-learn positive habits that will take the place of old ones. It just doesn’t always happen as quick as we hope, but the reward is so worth it.

Weight & The Scale

You seem to stay within the same weight range for the most part – How often do you weigh yourself? If not very often, how did you stop weighing yourself often and obsessing over the number? And how did you learn to not care about the number on the scale as much?

When I got serious about recovery, I decided to ditch the scale. I removed the scale from the bathroom and put it in storage so it wouldn’t tempt me. For the longest time, I was trying to get better while still weighing myself daily and I found it impossible. I wanted my recovery to focus on what was important to me- my health and well-being. After time, it was easier for me to give up because I realized that I didn’t NEED the scale! After all of these years letting the scale control my life, I realized that I could live a healthy life without a daily number. I can maintain my weight by paying attention to how my clothes fit me and how I’m feeling. Once in a blue moon curiosity gets the better of me and I will weigh myself, but it no longer changes my mood or how I feel about myself. It is just a number. I am also surprised to find that I am usually within the same 5 pound weight range. I’ve learned that the body does a wonderful job maintaining its weight when you treat it kindly.

Happy Weights

What is your definition of a “happy weight” and how did you know that you had reached your happy weight for your body?

To me, a Happy Weight is a weight your body can maintain with relative ease. My happy weight is the weight that my body naturally settles at when I am eating healthy foods (of course with occasional indulgences too), not restricting my intake, and exercising moderately. My happy weight is the weight I can maintain without resorting to obsessive eating or exercise patterns. I was only able to find my happy weight when I stopped counting calories, listened to my body’s hunger signals, and exercised without obsession. Ever since I did this, my body has been about the same size (probably give or take 5 pounds) for a few years.

A Happy Weight doesn’t necessarily mean that you will instantly love the weight/size where your body is happiest. I struggled for a long time to accept my Happy Weight and realize that I wasn’t going to be a better person, more loved, etc. if I was 10 pounds lighter. If anything I would be unhappy and struggling to maintain my low weight like I used to. Over time, I have realized that I would rather be where my body wants to be, than fighting it the rest of my life.

Over-Indulging & Slip-Ups

I eat healthy at least 80% of the time, but my boyfriend likes to go out to eat at a restaurant about once a week or go out for some drinks. I’ll agree, but beat myself up over it the next day because I feel “fat”. When I weigh myself and I’m not where I’d like to be, it ruins my entire day. I love food and trying out new restaurants and want to be able to enjoy those things in life (in moderation) instead of beating myself up about them. How you cope now with times when you over-indulge a bit. I often beat myself up for eating “too much” and have trouble letting it go and being at peace with it.

How do you make up for a “bad day” (overeating-wise) without restricting food intake or overexercising?

I’d be interested in hearing about how you cope now with times when you over-indulge a bit. I often beat myself up for eating “too much” and have trouble letting it go and being at peace with it.

I think it is best to start your day off with positive behaviours that will quickly turn your mood around. If I over-indulge, I like to start the morning with a Green Monster and a sweaty workout. Shower, get ready, and put on my favourite outfit. After that, I am usually feeling back on track as the day goes by. A workout in the morning encourages me to eat healthy all day long and gives me a positive outlook for the entire day. Focus on positive actions you can feel good about (i.e., cook a healthy meal for dinner), rather than negative actions (i.e., I will skip my lunch today) to punish yourself.

Regarding overeating, it is human nature to overeat from time to time. I overeat sometimes and I try not to beat myself up about it. I may eat when I’m bored, sometimes I eat too much when celebrating with family or friends, or when I’m dealing with PMS cravings. It happens to the best of us! The difference now is that I don’t beat myself up and it doesn’t lead to a binge like it used to. It is what it is and I move forward. I have found that the more I dwell on something, the more difficult it is to get over.

Exercise & Balance

My question to you is how you’ve learned to find a healthy medium with your workouts that doesn’t throw your body out of whack, and also how you manage to stay focused on being all around healthy (as opposed to being thin) without letting yourself make extreme choices.

For me, a big turning point with exercise was finding a way to make it fun. I used to make myself do crazy long workouts at the gym and they always felt like a punishment more than something to enjoy. I used to workout to burn calories and that was about it. Once I stopped focusing on calories, I started to look for activities that I enjoyed the most. I fell in love with running and hiking and I was motivated by how my fitness improved and how I felt. It is important to find activities that you enjoy.

Trigger Foods & Baking

I was wondering if you had any trigger foods in relation to binge eating (foods that started the binge). I know that for myself, I simply cannot have anything super salty around or I’ll get a bit crazy with it (pretzels, chips, tortilla chips, etc.). When I bake, I immediately have to pack some of it up and put it in the freezer or take it to work.

I wouldn’t call any foods a ‘trigger’ for me anymore, but I do have a major sweet tooth! When I bake, I freeze baked goods and I also give them away so they don’t make up the majority of my diet. I typically always have a treat after dinner to end my day and I look forward to this indulgence. I’m often satisfied with a serving because I know I can have some the next day if I want to. By not making things forbidden or ‘off-limits’, they become less appealing to me.

Self-Sabotage

I think when I reached my “happy weight” I self sabotage. I start to say “oh I can have some extra snacks, I deserve it” then at the sign of weight gain I go into the whole “you’re terrible for eating that, might as well just have more then” mind frame. I’d be interested to hear how people deal with that.

I think self-sabotage can happen for many reasons. For me, I used to get a strong urge to overeat when my weight was too low for my body’s preference. I would be terribly hungry, which would lead to overeating and often binges (some say this is a survival instinct). Once I found a weight that my body could maintain with relative ease, the urge to overeat was reduced greatly. Others might self-sabotage because they are uncomfortable or insecure at their new weight and their self-esteem and emotions have not caught up with their weight loss. In these cases, it might be a good idea to talk it through with a professional.

It was important for me to realize that a a slip-up didn’t need to be a catastrophe and it didn’t mean I was a failure. I still have occasions when I overeat, but I realize that it is just a bump in the road along my journey.

Negative Self Talk

How have you over come negative self-talk, in both regards to self image as well as other aspects of life?

I’m certainly not 100% free of negative self-talk, but I would say that I have reduced it by probably 75-80% over the past few years.

I feel like negative self-talk and negative behaviours feed off of each other. As long as I was treating my body poorly, the negative self-talk would increase in proportion to it. In return, the negative self-talk fueled the negative behaviours! It is a hard cycle to break out of.

A good strategy that I used (and still do from time to time!) is this:

List all of your negative thoughts on paper, cross them out, and write positive ones to replace them. Do it first thing in the morning and right before bed. I strongly suggest that you do this twice a day because when you write your list at night time, you can look and see what was worrying you in the morning. Often, you will realize that your negative thoughts had no basis whatsoever.

For more on dismissing negative thoughts, please see this post.

Eating On The Go

Do you ever crave convenience foods, especially if you are out and about/busy? I’d say cutting way down on these is one of the biggest changes for me over the past few years.

When you are away from your home either traveling or eating out, are you triggered to binge by certain foods, since it is often hard to find healthful nourishing vegan foods in the average restaurant. (for me especially, living in rural Alberta). I cook very clean meals at home and dont bring processed food in that will trigger me, but i really struggle with traveling, which i have to do a lot of for work.

I know that my options as a vegan are likely to be very minimal when out and about so I try to pack snacks when I will be out. I am much more prepared now than I used to be. I tend to pack fruit (like an apple with nut butter), Glo Bars, or trail mix when I go out for an extended period of time.

When I travel I try to do a few things to prepare. 1) I ask for a mini fridge in the room if there isn’t one. 2) I will often call ahead to the restaurant to let them know I need a vegan dish. 3) I pack as many healthy foods as I can in my suitcase, such as bars, fruit, crackers, trail mix, etc. 4) I look for a nearby grocery store, market, or convenience store and pick up some fruit and things like cereal or non-dairy milk if my hotel doesn’t provide them. My goal is not to eat exactly like I eat at home, but to just do my best with the resources I have.

Friends & Family

How did you friends and family react to your disordered eating, and when did they realize that you needed help?

My family knew I needed help long before I was able to admit it. They would often try to help me or persuade me to get help, but until I was ready and willing to admit I had a problem, nothing really got through to me. It is extremely difficult on loved ones who have to watch the person go through it.

Therapy

Have you found help with behavioral therapy or through any other professional supporting you, or instead have strictly improved from the work done through your own self help?

While I was in university, I saw a behavioural therapist to seek help for my eating disorder. I was suffering from the binge-starve cycle and I felt like I had hit rock bottom. I gained about 25-30 pounds in my 1st year of university and I knew something had to change. While I was scared to be open with someone about my struggles, it was one of the best things I could have done for myself at the time. She gave me take home assignments that I could use to challenge my negative thoughts and behaviours.

Experiencing Emotions

I’m currently recovering from anorexia and I am realizing that I have trouble experiencing my emotions and managing them. Whenever something is wrong, I turn to my eating disorder…it’s like my crutch. I was wondering how you learned to experience all the ups and downs of life, while creating positive coping mechanisms, so that whenever you felt down, you wouldn’t turn to pictures of models, or doing other things ED-related things.

I totally used to use my ED as a way to avoid experiencing emotions. Anytime I felt the least bit uncomfortable, I would turn to my ED to numb the pain. When I recovered it was difficult because I had to actually face the ups and downs of life. I used to shut off all of my emotions and not talk about them. Talking to a therapist and also writing on this blog helped me tremendously. I learned, albeit very slowly, that talking about my struggles and problems was actually very healing and cathartic for me. The more open I was, the more healing that took place. It is important to find people you trust to talk to during this time because doing it alone is very isolating.

Food & Punishment

I think my biggest struggle is punishment. Any suggestions on how to not punish yourself for eating something that your mind thinks is “bad” – I think this also goes along with how to eat in moderation or understanding the consequences if you do decide to eat something that’s not healthy.

I think it helps not to think of foods as ‘bad’ or ‘good’. When I have a dessert or treat, I don’t say to myself that I am eating a ‘bad’ food, but just a food that I try to eat in moderation. Even though a food might not be superior nutrition-wise, I still recognize the value that it can have in my diet, such as pleasure, enjoyment, celebrations, etc.

How to Begin

Would you tell me how you started on your journey towards a better and real health? I have found myself on a path of self destruction for a long time. My mind knows better but old habits die hard. Where did you find the strength to overcome your negative thoughts and destructive patterns? How did you begin?

I was not able to change until I admitted that I was in trouble and I wanted to take steps to change my situation. I was sick of living my life the way I was and I felt like I was missing out on so many opportunities. Please see my Road to health series, for my story up to this point.

Off-Limit Foods

Did you ever have foods that were “off-limits” – as healthy as they may be (for example oils, nut butters, nuts, etc .. high in fat and calories.. but in a good way). Was it a struggle to re-incorporate these foods into your diet? If so – how were you finally okay with eating them… guilt-free?

Avocado, oils, nuts/seeds, and nut butters used to be off limits for me. I used to be terrified to eat these foods and I avoided them at all costs. When I took my focus off of calories and fat grams, it was much easier to introduce them into my diet because I wasn’t obsessing like I used to. I tried to focus on the wonderful nutritional benefits of these foods instead, like glowing skin and hair. I also saw a lot of bloggers eating these foods with their daily meals and that inspired me to use them too. Of course, I still try to be conscious of portion sizes, but I don’t obsess over it.

Weight Gain

I’m recovering from a past of restrictive eating and obsession with calorie counting. My question for you is that is how you would react if you gained back some of the weight you lost without changing your eating. Would you count calories or cutback on intake? My fear is that I will gain back the weight I lost and no longer be able to accept myself.

How did you deal with the fear of gaining weight when you stopped restricting your diet?

How do you not beat yourself up over weight gain. How do you avoid being depressed and upset about it?

I gained about 10-15 pounds when I recovered and initially it was very hard on me to accept that my body needed to gain this weight to be healthy again. It was very hard not being able to fit into old clothes, so it helped if I gave them away instead of keeping them in my closet.

This is where my hobbies also helped me out a ton. I started to focus on building my life back up and filling it up with activities that I enjoyed like writing, photography, or running. I used these new hobbies to distract myself from constantly focusing on my weight. Over time, it became easier to accept my weight because I was not only out there enjoying my life, but I was visibly happy and energetic, much more so than I was when starving myself or bingeing. For me, the proof was in the pudding!

Mindless & Intuitive Eating

Sometimes after I eat a meal, even if it’s filling and nutritious, I find myself walking over to the pantry and continuing to eat, whether I’m hungry or not. They aren’t serious binges in my case, and more often than not it’s healthy food, usually dried fruit or something sweet, but I know it’s not necessary, even if it’s not that bad for me. How do I combat these urges? I’ve definitely tried to put thought into staying away from the pantry/fridge after meals, but for some reason, it’s really really difficult for me. Any suggestions or strategies to help me?

How do I learn how to eat intuitively?

This happens to me as well, especially in the Winter time when I am bored at night! I found that having a dessert or sweet treat at the end of my dinner was not only something to look forward to, but it was a way for me to signal that I was done eating for the day. I typically always crave something sweet after dinner. When I have my dessert at night, I feel satisfied and I start looking forward to breakfast the next day. I try to have large breakfasts and lunches and have my calories taper off throughout the day. This seems to help prevent mindless eating at night for me.

As for intuitive eating, there is no magic formula to learn how to eat intuitively. It takes time and patience to re-learn how to listen to hunger signals. I had to give up calorie counting because as long as I was counting calories and restricting my hunger, I would not be able to listen to my body’s true hunger signals. It was a lot of trial and error for me and it took at least a year or longer to feel comfortable assessing what my body is telling me. After 2-3 years, it now comes to me naturally and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Pressure to Eat Healthy

Do you feel pressure to only showcase certain foods, i.e. natural, vegan, “healthy” in some capacity on your blog? Do you ever just want to feature a super nonhealthy dessert but fear reader backlash and outcry? Or you have no desire at this point in your eating journey to show things like that anyway?

I don’t feel pressure surrounding what I ‘should’ feature on the blog and I am very grateful that my readers have been accepting of all kinds of foods. The recipes I feature on the blog are foods, meals, and desserts that I actually eat and LOVE, so I don’t feel pressure to change one way or another. I eat what makes me feel good and I share that on my blog. I don’t think everything I post is healthy, nor should it be, but I feel like I have a good balance in my diet. Of course, what works for me, doesn’t necessarily work for everyone…we all have to eat in a way that makes us feel content! I’m just one woman who has found what works in my life and sharing it with the world.

Do you ever go a while without eating, but don’t end up feeling hungry when you normally would? When this happens to me, I don’t know whether to eat or not eat. I feel like I SHOULD eat, because I don’t like to skip meals, but I also feel like my body would tell me to eat if it really needed to. What causes hunger signals to go away? Do you have any tricks to keeping your appetite on a steady schedule? (I suppose this partially relates to being intuitive.)

I don’t think this has ever happened to me before! My appetite never seems to let me down. ;) Maybe others can comment on this below?

What is your biggest take-away message from your recovery?

Ok, ok…you got me, no one asked this question yesterday, but I like it so I’m going to pretend someone did!

One of the best lessons I have learned is that life doesn’t have to be a battle every day. It doesn’t have to be a struggle. Life is what we make it. We can choose to make it a battleground or we can do our best to beat that mindset and learn to be free. I have chosen to be free. Of course I still struggle like anyone else, but I don’t beat myself into the ground like I used to.

I learn from the past, or try to anyways, and I remind myself daily just how short life is. I work at this everyday and I’m excited for the journey instead of only thinking about the destination.

I used to say, ‘I’ll be happy when ________’

Now I say, ‘How can I be happy NOW.’

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{ 175 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Jaclyn T April 26, 2011

This is such a wonderful and encouraging post. FYI, I gave you a “Sunshine Award” on my blog…http://positiveponderings.blogspot.com/2011/04/awarded.html

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2 Sara April 26, 2011

“Life doesn’t have to be a battle everyday”
“I have chosen to be free”
Love it.
Thanks for the wonderful post.

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3 Laura April 26, 2011

What a fantastic post! Thank you for this.

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4 Justeen @ Blissful Baking April 26, 2011

This is a very inspiring and encouraging post! Thanks, Angela!

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5 kate@ahealthypassion April 26, 2011

You are an inspiration to so many women thanks for sharing.

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6 Michelle April 26, 2011

this is will helps heaps of people. thank you for being you…

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7 Natalie April 26, 2011

Thank you so much for this post, I just read every word of it. I am a seventeen-year-old girl currently going through eating disorder recovery, and have been feeling incredibly down on myself lately. I’ve begun to fall back into my old habits, but your website has helped me so much along the way. I have a great love for food and veganism just as you do, and your recipes and positive outlook have made me want to have a healthier relationship with food. Although I’m not there yet, I know I can be, just like you. Thank you.

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8 Angela (Oh She Glows) April 26, 2011

Yes you certainly can…keep the faith! Thanks for your kind words. :)

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9 Leanne (Bride to Mrs.) April 26, 2011

LOVE LOVE LOOOOVE this post! You’re fabulous.

I’m bookmarking this page on my favorites list!

I hope that I can find my healthy weight & healthy mindset.

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10 Nina (SLO Foodie) April 26, 2011

Such an uplifting post, Angela! What a positive outlook and a great way to start my day. Thanks so much for posting.

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11 Ashley April 26, 2011

This is one heck of a post, lady!! You are doing more good to the general public then you could ever imagine. Love YOU! xo

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12 Amanda Jewell April 26, 2011

Amazing post Angela! Thank you for saying the things that many others are afraid to say. I’m sending this post to a few friends too! I’m going to go have a wonderful day TODAY. :)

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13 Nicole @ Fresh & Fit April 26, 2011

I love this post! I can relate to every point you made! You have such a positive refreshing outlook!

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14 Jenny @ Fitness Health and Food April 26, 2011

I love that you say you needed “freedom” and that a happy weight is one that you can maintain with “relative ease”

You are a wonderful example for readers, thank you so much for sharing your journey! You and your amazing blog played a part in the creation of mine :)

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15 Angela (Oh She Glows) April 26, 2011

Thank you Jenny!

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16 Cait @ Beyond Bananas April 26, 2011

Thanks so much for answering my question, Angela… and I love reading the other answers too,. They can really guide a girl trying to stay focued in recovery!

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17 Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat April 26, 2011

You are amazing Ange. Thank you so much for this post and being so raw and honest about your experiences. Although I’ve never struggled with an ED like anorexia or bulimia, I’ve learned so much from you and your approach to life – you honestly have no idea! The part of this post that resonated with me the most was your comment about control being the last thing that you needed, and freedom being what you needed instead. Since starting my blog, my eating style has changed dramatically. When I was losing weight I was restrictive in the types of foods I’d eat – literally nothing went into my mouth without me knowing how many calories were in it. Now, although I eat clean about 90% of the time, I’m far more flexible and willing to experiment – probably because blogging has taught me that I LOVE food, and its far too good a thing to miss out on! I still have a lot of learning to do with regards to mindful eating, but like you said, give it time! :) Have a fantastic day! :)

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18 Angela (Oh She Glows) April 26, 2011

That is great to hear Ange…I can relate to your experience a lot!

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19 McKella April 26, 2011

Beautiful post, I’m going to bookmark this one!
I especially love your thoughts on “Happy Weight”. I feel like I’ve finally gotten a handle on intuitive eating and my body is starting to release weight, but I’m not sure what my happy weight is, because I’ve never really had a good relationship with food. For the brief time that I wasn’t obsessed with food, I was either losing weight or at the lower end of my BMI range (I don’t put a lot of stock in BMI, but it’s seems to be a decent ballpark figure for me). I guess I’ll find out where my happy weight is. I also like that you specify that it doesn’t mean we’ll love it when we get there. It’s so true, but I think I’m in a much better place to accept my happy weight, whatever it may be!

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20 Destini April 26, 2011

I really enjoyed this post. I am in the transition of switching over to a healthy lifestyle and not a restricted intake of food and extreme exercise. I can also confirm that even only doing this for a month, I feel soo much better. I do have moments of hesitation, but old habits die hard. I will sometimes think just because I am not vocally talking about the amount of food I am eating, but still calculating the calories in my head that it’s not the same. I try and catch myself when I do that and stop, breath and relax. It’s a work in progress.

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21 Angela (Oh She Glows) April 26, 2011

Yes you are very right…a work in progress. Each day presents new challenges and hurdles…if you can understand that it won’t always be easy, well, that is half the battle!

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22 Katie @ katie's hungry life April 26, 2011

I love love love everything about this post. I struggled with various eating disorders for years, and when I discovered your blog back in 2009 I realized that “life doesn’t have to be a battle every day”. This post really sums everything up…you are inspirational!

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23 Angela (Oh She Glows) April 26, 2011

:) Thank YOU!

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24 Shavonne April 26, 2011

THANK YOU!

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25 Ashley April 26, 2011

Bookmarking this most definitely:) Such an inspiration– thank you for sharing your thoughts! I’ve noticed that my biggest issue with food and healthy habits, exercise is the negativity. The hardest part I realized recently was, even though I am unhappy with my weight, I cannot beat myself up because it makes me want to change even less. But this past weekend, I decided to go shopping. I love clothes shopping– but when I am unhappy with my weight all the negativity keeps me from even bothering to look nice. But this recent shopping trip, I went with my mother, who has been changing her eating habits and is getting more fit each day– and the clothes I brought home are gorgeous. They add an extra bounce to my step– and I don’t bother looking at the size. I remember reading your Size Healthy post, it brought tears to my eyes because that’s how I felt.
Anyway, thank you for answering those questions– each one hit home with me and I’m feeling very inspired and encouraged today!

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26 Angela (Oh She Glows) April 26, 2011

That is such a great point! New clothes can make all the difference sometimes. I think many of us fall into the trap thinking that we don’t ‘deserve’ anything, but sometimes we do, right?
I still have size healthy written on my jeans and it always makes me smile!

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27 Erin April 26, 2011

Thanks for your post Ang. I’ve struggled a lot over the years with binges, obsessive exercising, self-hate and restrictive eating, and it’s so inspirational to me to see people like you finding a healthy balance. It’s a long road, but I know one day I will make it past the toughest parts.

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28 Christina April 26, 2011

Angela what a strong post! You said
“A Happy Weight doesn’t necessarily mean that you will instantly love the weight/size where your body is happiest. I struggled for a long time to accept my Happy Weight and realize that I wasn’t going to be a better person, more loved, etc. if I was 10 pounds lighter.”
And this really hit home for me. I had asked you about the self-sabatoge issues and I think you are right. I think self sabatoge, for me, may have come from a place where I was restricting so many foods (incuding portion sizes) that once I hit a certain weight I gave myself free reign on what I could eat.

I actually kept the weight off for a year but this past winter I was on again/off again vegan and I think I ate too much processed foods. Instead of looking at all the different foods I ate I immediately went to the negative thinking.

This post will forever stick with me. I’ll be reading it again for sure. Thanks for the wonderful post and being brave enough to share your thoughts and feelings!

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29 Angela (Oh She Glows) April 26, 2011

Thanks for sharing Christina. :) I think as long as you are reflecting on everything, you can’t go wrong. Sometimes it takes a while to have everything click.

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30 Christina April 27, 2011

it sure does take time but it’s so worth it! I guess I’m still a work in progress :) I’m getting comfortable with a workout “schedule” and hopefully that’ll help. I used to never make a schedule and would just workout when I could, then I’d find that there were time I’d totally miscount my availablility and I’d miss a few days at the gym and end up back at square one. So, schedule time it is!

Thanks for being so inspiring :)

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31 Angela (Oh She Glows) April 27, 2011

Goodluck!

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32 Anne April 26, 2011

Thank you for this post.

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33 Julie (A Case of the Runs) April 26, 2011

Thanks for addressing my question about convenience food!

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34 Holly @ The Runny Egg April 26, 2011

Thanks for this Q/A post Angela — you have definitely changed for the better and you should be so proud! Thank you for sharing your experiences with us. It gives me hope that one day I’ll be at my happy weight and be content with my body.

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35 cathy April 26, 2011

angela, thank you so much for your honesty, openness, and courage in writing this post. and also for all the time you obviously put into sharing your experience and suggestions. this is a treasure trove of information. you have come so far!
thanks so much, again.
“I used to say, ‘I’ll be happy when ________’
Now I say, ‘How can I be happy NOW.’” – -> what a perfect way to end this post.
hope you’re feeling better today! :)

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36 Danielle @ weightsandmeasures April 26, 2011

You clearly put some serious time into this post. Thanks!

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37 Therese April 26, 2011

Angela, you never cease to inspire me! Thank you so much for answering all of those very candid questions. As a recovering emotional eater I can relate to a lot of what you said and I think one of the more important things to take away from this as well is the emphasis that it doesn’t happen overnight, it takes a lot of time and patience and you WILL slip-up but that’s perfectly alright. I think we (especially women) are SO hard on ourselves but by admitting that we DO slip-up and that we aren’t perfect is such a great message for those people who are struggling with any sort of eating disorder.

I definitely broke through my emotional eating by breaking free and actually telling a good friend how I was feeling. I realized it was something I never really did before as I was always the one OTHERS came to. But once I realized that my friends actually did want me to talk to them about what I was feeling (as well as taking up journalling again) I managed to stop snacking so much and it helped me to break free. Of course, that’s the shortened version…

Angela, you’re awesome!

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38 Angela (Oh She Glows) April 26, 2011

I bet you felt so good to get that off your shoulders too!

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39 Andrea April 26, 2011

I’d just like to add a big “me too!” to everything you said, haha. Though I can’t relate as much to the binge eating issues as that didn’t factor in to my ed/recovery, I could relate to much of your experience/advice. Great post! Also, as for the reader who asked about hunger… in my treatment program we were told that you should always eat at “eating times” (ie meals and snacks) in early recovery before you can trust your hunger signals. I speak from experience that this sometimes sucks, but ultimately helps the hunger signals to come back at appropriate times. That said, sometimes I still have to eat even when I’m not hungry, just because I know it has been 3-4 hours since I’ve eaten and my body needs the fuel.

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40 Angela (Oh She Glows) April 26, 2011

I have heard the same thing and while I have never been on a schedule myself, I can see how it would be helpful for many, especially in the initial stages!

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41 Kellie April 26, 2011

I am on a “schedule” too. I am in recovery and I have such a hard time with having to eat on schedule because I feel like I am not IE, but I was told that it what I need to recover.

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42 Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table April 26, 2011

This is such a powerful post. While I have never had an “eating disorder,” I think we all fall into disordered eating and feeling some pressure at times… especially with bathing suit season coming up! I particularly love that you got rid of your old clothes. That’s such a big move – and a powerful statement/commitment.

Something I like to keep in my head from Oprah (so cliche, I know): “I did this for myself today.”

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43 Sarah @ SarahFit.com April 26, 2011

Amazing Post! Thank you for being so open and candid with your readers. I don’t think I’ve ever read such an honest post from a healthy living blogger. You are going to effect many women today and I hope you are aware of the positive impact it will have on their lives. I’m going to tweet about it now because it is such a must read for so many.

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44 Angela (Oh She Glows) April 26, 2011

Thank you Sarah!

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45 Lauren April 26, 2011

“Life doesn’t have to be a battle everyday.” WOW. I am in tears right now. I cannot even begin to tell you how much your writing has helped me. Your blog is where I come to when I feel lost. I read your old posts on body image, self-love etc… and find hope. You inspire me each and everyday. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

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46 Meredith April 26, 2011

This was such a fantastic post, thank you so much!

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47 Beth April 26, 2011

I was really interested by the last question about appetite and how to intuitively eat with that. I stopped eating sugary foods (except for fruits pretty much). Now I don’t have strong appetites, which is great because I only very rarely get cravings, however it is hard to know when/how much to eat. Does anyone else have this issue, if so what do you do typically to make sure are eating appropriately. I usually plan meals in advance, and make sure they are balanced/healthy and eat when I notice my blood sugar levels appear to be low but I often worry I am eating too much then because its hard to sense when I am satisfied.

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48 Carly April 26, 2011

You have such a way with words, this is really well done.
During a speech I heard recently at a gala, someone said “you don’t plan for life, this is life”. He was spreading the message of be happy now, do what you want to do. I need to remind myself of this every single day!

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49 Angela (Oh She Glows) April 26, 2011

I love that quote…very true.

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50 Sonia April 26, 2011

Angela,
Thank you for this post. The past few weeks have been a struggle for me. I’ve been fighting the calorie count and negative thoughts and sometimes I win, most of the time I lose. The post helps reaffirm why I want to be healthy and further my recovery from my ED. It’s a great booster shot in the steps to loving myself as a whole rather than just a number on the scale. You’re so right. Life doesn’t have to be a battle.
Thank you so so so much.

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51 Katie @ Nourishing Flourishing April 26, 2011

This is awesome, and it’s going to help a lot of people, Angela. <3!

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52 Andrea B. @ Vegvacious April 26, 2011

Another great post. You’ve given so much info for me to mull over and think about. I’ve definitely started being happy now rather than I’ll be happy when I get this or if this happens….it’s hard to change your mindset, but in the end it makes life so much more enjoyable :-) Congratulations on how far you’ve come — you’ve done an amazing job!!

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53 veganlisa April 26, 2011

Ange,
Thank you for sharing your journey. Each response provides great insight into the work it takes to recover and the benefits that make it all worth while.

I recently read a book called the Slow Down Diet that shares a number of the points you mentioned above and has a lot of scientific evidence to back up the practice of eating to nourish your body and to provide pleasure.

xo

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54 Sabrina April 26, 2011

i LOVE THIS POST ANG. I have mentioned before that I dont and never have had an eatting disorder but so much of this is helpful for other issues we face in life. I think its also fair to say that eatting disorders also include those people who are obese and use food as therapy. This would all still apply to them.
One thing I have always wondered about people who are anorexic is what they think when they see images of jews in nazi camps or starving children around the world. Do they identify this as grotesque and painful or do they see it as some level of gorgeous that they want to obtain? I have always wondered about that.
Sabrina.

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55 Julie @ Shining From Within April 26, 2011

Love this post!!!! Thank you!

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56 Emily April 26, 2011

Thank you so, so much for this. I’ve never had an ED, but as a teenage girl in today’s society, you can bet I’ve experienced my fair share of insecurities about my body. It’s only in the last few months that I’ve realized I have to treat myself well to feel good about myself, and this was exactly what I needed to read. :)

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57 Lauren at Keep It Sweet April 26, 2011

You are amazing. Thank you for taking the time to share so much with us!

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58 Stacie April 26, 2011

I haven’t said it in a while and today seems so fitting. Thank you for what you do. You are truly an inspiration for those of us struggling. Thank you for taking the courageous step to share your story so that others way heal. You truly are a blessing! Wonderful post.

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59 Angela (Oh She Glows) April 26, 2011

Thank you Stacie, that means a lot to me!

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60 chelsey @ clean eating chelsey April 26, 2011

Such an amazing post Angela. It’s like you took the words out of my mouth for advice to others!

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61 Carly April 26, 2011

Wow. Thank you so much for this post. I needed this.

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62 Clare @ Fitting It All IN April 26, 2011

Beautiful post – wonderful answers to questions that so many of us have. You’re so inspiring Angela!

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63 Angela @ MyPinkyToes April 26, 2011

This post is amazing…thank you for opening up and sharing with us. I have dealt with a lot of the same issues, and it is nice to see that I am not the only one…but that it can be overcome! I am positive that this post was beyond helpful for so many people out there struggling. You are an inspiration!

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64 Tricia April 26, 2011

This is amazing! Great post.

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65 LauraJayne April 26, 2011

Thank you for this post – it was honest, and I understand how hard it might have been to write some of answers! I love reading your blog – it is so inspirational! I’m really glad that you were able to overcome and blog to help others!

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66 Kimberley April 26, 2011

Wow girl, you are truly inspirational. Thank you for opening up your life and sharing it with everyone, you can impact so many lives.

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67 Carrie (Moves 'N Munchies) April 26, 2011

WOWOWOW thank you so much for all these incredible answers Angela! you put a lot of time into this I can tell… thnk you- you are helping a lot of people out there!

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68 thehealthyapron April 26, 2011

This is such a powerful post. You ROCK! This really helped me, especially hearing how you DID gain weight when you went through recovery. I honestly feel the happiest and healthiest I’ve ever been and if it means I weigh 5 more pounds than I have in a LONG time…so be it!

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69 liz April 26, 2011

You are amazing. Thanks for sharing such a positive outlook.

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70 Bronwyn April 26, 2011

Thanks for always being so open Angela! Not only open, but so without judgement in your posts on disordered eating, and healthy recovery.

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71 never not dreaming April 26, 2011

I have difficulty with any and all of this. Terribly terribly struggling to cope. My main source of misery is my inability to exercise….quite literally. Everyone copes by going to “balance” and “moderation”…but I can’t do that.
I way overindulge and eat chocolate every day..I binge…don’t get me wrong…I eat healthfully also (I guess), but I screw up bigtime…I mix things together…I eat entire tubs of things that are not the best, etc…But I have no way to “compensate” by exercising , etc..so it really bothers me when people say that. To anyone that can literally walk and move and be physically capable…wow…just wow…
The problem is that I am not healthy right now (in my body) . But I do know that I can can control my thoughts. I still have my mind (…kind of).
And I think its important to know that YES, I can be unhappy with the situation…but that does not mean I cannot have faith.
Another thing I need to do is disallow negativity. Like literally make negativity a no-no at all times.
But again, I wish someone could tell me literally what to do in order to gain my body again…I don’t even know what “mindful or intuitive eating” means. So, I feel I am all all wrong, all the time. And I have never met anyone like me…who literally cannot do any exercise for long, long, extended time. I feel real alone in it. And confused. Like I’m so wrong.
Anyway, that’s all I guess.

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72 zoe (and the beatles) April 26, 2011

you are truly amazing, angela. what an inspiring post. it just made my day :)!

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73 Samantha Cernock April 26, 2011

What a wonderful, helpful and upbeat post. Thank you!

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74 Ellalinea April 26, 2011

I love love love this post! Not only do you explain everything you feel so well, it all sounds very familiar to each and everyone of us, in one way or another.. When is your book coming out? ;) When you write, it seems like I’m talking with one of my best friends..

You’re a true inspiration to a lot of people, including me!

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75 Ellalinea April 26, 2011

Btw Hoooraaaaaaaaaaaaay for green monsters! :D

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76 chloe @ 321delish April 26, 2011

I just wanted to say thank you for posting this :)

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77 Mel April 26, 2011

Beautifully put. Especially the take away. That applies not just to eating but actually allowing ourselves to just peacefully be. I needed to read these words today. Thanks for being so candid.

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78 Leanne @ Healthful Pursuit April 26, 2011

Thank you so much for answering all of our questions, Angela. I look up to you in such a huge way. I’ve been “recovering” for just about 4 years now. I’ve come from 50lbs underweight and in a very dark place, to finally having an overall healthy relationship with food and at a happy/healthy weight. It’s been such a challenging road for me both physically and mentally, not to mention the impact it’s made to my past relationships.
Something that’s always helped me was to remind myself that mastery is a journey and not a destination. It’s okay to slip up and backtrack as long as you continue on your path. When I first started on my path I was expecting to be healed in months. That puts a lot of pressure on someone! I now know that one day at a time is the best way to do things, but never thought of attacking my on & off calorie counting with one meal at a time. I LOVE this idea.
Also, “How can I be happy NOW.” is perfect. I need to remind myself of this.
Your post couldn’t have come at a better time for me. I needed that extra bit of encouragement to keep on the path of finding myself, loving who I’ve become, and continuing to nourish my relationship with food. Thanks again and again :)

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79 Angela (Oh She Glows) April 26, 2011

Thank you for sharing…I’m happy that this resonates with you too :)

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80 Lynne April 26, 2011

Amazing post. Thank you so much. :)

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81 Aspin231 April 26, 2011

Thank you for posting this Angela.
I just wanted to respond regarding the person who asked about not feeling hungry after skipping a meal. This happens to me too! I struggled with a serious ED up until a year and a half ago, and even though now I’m very happy with where I am emotionally and physically, I seem to have some ‘problems’ that stuck around even after I recovered. I now have poor circulation, which was never a problem before, and I don’t usually feel ‘hungry’ or ‘full’. I just have to guess, taking in to account how much exercise I’ve done that day, and how much/what else I’ve eaten; I just try to keep myself as fed as possible, but it seems that my body doesn’t want to give me any clues on how to do so.
Bon courage, and keep up the good work- all of you! :-)

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82 Hannah April 26, 2011

Thank you thank you thank you! I’m going to read this later tonight so I can devote my full attention to it, but your inspiring words are so great to hear.

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83 Shelby April 26, 2011

Really such an inspiration!! I loved this and loved reading about your struggles. I know them all far to well and the emotions that go with everything that was described.
I hope one day I’ll be free from this all. Your amazing! And you’ve come such a long way and I can’t wait until I can say the same….hopefully!

As far as the not eating for a long period of time and not being able to tell if you are “hungry”….whoever asked that if they mean they restricted A LOT and didn’t eat anything or only like 200 calories for 3-4 days or so you almost get this weird thing and don’t feel the need to eat…you don’t feel hungry….so I’m not sure if it was referring to something like that and just not listening to your body. in a situation like that…you should eat….even though I’ve told myself at times I don’t need to eat because I don’t feel hungry.

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84 Dana April 26, 2011

Your words are always so beautiful. When I found your blog over a year ago I was pretty deep into obsessive restricting/calorie counting/binging. It was partly from your words that have helped me let go of the numbers. The only thing that happens when I count calories is I gain weight and become neurotic and unhappy. I have embarked on a journey with my best friend to stop this destructive behavior, and after 3 months I feel more stable than I ever have. I also have a wonderful partner that has been with me through all my struggles, and he keeps me sane. This post was another reassurance that I’m moving in the right direction. Thank you for your commitment to helping other people.

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85 Malorie April 26, 2011

Thank you for this post. It was exactly what I needed. I wouldn’t consider myself to have an eating disorder, but I have been off and on calorie counting, restricting, binging and trying to lose five pounds for the last six years. Last week I decided I couldn’t do it anymore. I ordered a book on intuitive eating and stopped calorie counting on Thursday. I am definitely struggling, but I feel like a weight has been lifted off of me. I am at a healthy weight now and I really don’t need to lose anything. I have pretty much maintained the same weight for the last five years and I think my body is happy here, and I just need to accept that. I had been diligently counting calories for the past two months and didn’t lose an ounce. So after beating myself up for a few weeks I finally realized that if I didn’t lose anything after those two months of being so careful that it just wasn’t going to happen. So anyway I just wanted to say thanks and let you know that this really helped me.

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86 Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes April 26, 2011

Love this post! Truly insprirational!!! :D

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87 Leah (The Kind Weight Watcher) April 26, 2011

WOW, what an amazing post!

I’m a recovered(ing?) anorexic/binge eater/EDONS myself, and can relate to everything you say here. Thanks for sharing this with us.

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88 Leah (The Kind Weight Watcher) April 26, 2011

that should say “EDNOS”… ;-)

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89 Heather April 26, 2011

Thank you for the amazing post!! How did you know if you had a eating disorder. My family seems to think I do~ But at this time I really do not. I work out about 6 days a week for an 1hr, I eat pretty clean and have been the thinnest I have ever been and know everyone thinks I have a problem. The only thing I would say I have a problem with is eating out and wanting to eat healthy, whole grains, veg and such. When we are invited to others house I will not pig out on pizza. How do you know if you have a problem??

~Heather

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90 ash April 26, 2011

wonderful post- this brightened my day! :)

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91 Becky April 26, 2011

What a great post! I have never had an eating disorder, but I can say that I have been obsessed with exercise, eating and my body image. I am trying really hard to only eat when I am hungry. I have currently stopped couting my calories. But who knows what will happen tomorrow. I try to take it one day at a time. The hardest thing I am dealing with right now is always thinking about food. I have some vegan treats in the house and I am trying hard to only eat them once a day..this is also where I struggle I want to eat them all the time!! Thanks so much for this post…I am going to print it out and read it all the time!

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92 Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) April 26, 2011

Oh Angela, the amount of work that this post took you…amazing detail, thoughtfulness, depth, and true care and emotion that you put into every question!

Thank you for answering my question, which was the Pressure to Eat Healthy/What you blog about (second from last). Thanks so much for your answer which was pretty much what I suspected it would be, but it’s nice to know that your readers have supported you with your choices. Sometimes I post desserts that are sugar filled (and no, desserts aren’t “healthy” and I never said they were!) but sometimes I get some raised eyebrows in my comment field when I do that and I have become ok with that. Not every thing is for every person.

But back to this amazing compilation of questions…thank you for taking the time to address so many things. A true gift. Thanks, as always, for being real, being receptive to readers’ questions, and blogging from your heart :)

Hope you are feeling better!

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93 Moni'sMeals April 26, 2011

what a nice post. So much work you put in and it shows! You are so great. The part I liked the most is when you said—writing down some negatives thoughts on paper, crossing them out with postitives. Wow, we all can use that can’t we. :)

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94 Lexie April 26, 2011

This article might help some readers out. Some people are moderators when it comes to changing their diets/habits/etc. And some people are abstainers.

I find moderation to be very freeing. I perfer to not restrict myself. And then once those chains are gone, I end up losing interest in whatever it was I was avoiding. Like fast food.

Some people are abstainers. They need to just cancel something out entirely, because if they get a taste of it, they will keep going and never break the cycle.

Sometimes when it comes to changing things in your life, it’s good to know which type of person you are. Check out The Happiness Project for the quiz to see which type you are.

http://www.happiness-project.com/happiness_project/2011/04/quiz-are-you-a-moderator-or-an-abstainer-when-trying-to-give-something-up.html

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95 Alli April 26, 2011

Thank you for the time you took to write this post. It helps me down to my core to know that others have been though similar struggles and that I can have a better life if I want it for myself. I have never said out loud to anyone that I struggle(d) with binge eating but, I did. It consumed my life for several years and it was do to over exercising and over restricting. When I had my daughter I made a decision on that day to fight back and change my life. I don’t want to inflict that on her. I am working on a healthy self image and healthy habits to pass on to my children. I have had only 3 binges in almost 2 years. I have written down so many notes in my journal from your post. I am still working every day but, every day it is getting easier and I am getting happier. I love your blog and you truly are an inspiration. THANK YOU.

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96 Eileen April 26, 2011

Thank you Angela! I’m about 7 months into abandoning dieting. It has been very difficult at times, but the freedom that comes along with it brings a peace that is so worth the short-term struggle. Each day I see more and more progress (even with occassional days that seem like backtracking). Thank you for reminding me it’s a journey and that there is so much more freedom to come.

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97 Catherine April 26, 2011

This is such a great post. I’m from Quebec and discovered your blog a few months ago (so excuse my English ;)
I’m recovering from an ED, and you have helped me a lot!! It took me a long time to understand that my boulemia crises were coming from all the restrictions I had with food. I would eat “properly” all week, and my body was screaming for sugar and fat in the week-end. After I read “Maigrir sans régime” and “Eat what you love, Love what you eat”, I began listening to my body, to my hunger and satiety feelings…I’m still learning…I also use hypnose, and that helps a lot to change those destructives behaviors and negative thoughts that I have used for so long…
I have gained weight. I am not happy with that, but it’s part of the recovering…With time, my body will ajust itself and find its “happy weight”, and I’ll have to accept it…This is a hard part…
I’m still binging from time to time, especialy when I tell myself that I need to loose weight or when I cut some food from my diet…It doesn’t take long for my body to react, it doesn’t accept any form of restriction now!!
And the most important, I’m now an happier person. Even if I’m 15 lbs heavier, I have choosen to be free, I don’t want my life to be a battle every single day and beat myself up every time I eat something “I shouldn’t”. I still have lots of work to do, but I know I will be completely free one day. You’re right, it takes patience…Somedays I feel like I’ll never be a “normal” person, but I remind myself that I am just perfect the way I am, that I have to be kind with myself and that I’m worth it…
I’m writing all those things and I realize that I’ve come such a long way. I’m proud of myself :)
And I’m glad I discovered your blog. Thank you for being such an inspiration.
Catherine

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98 Leah April 26, 2011

Really love this post! I could echo what everyone else has said in the comment section. You’ve come a long way and are clearly an inspiration to a lot of people!

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99 Roz April 26, 2011

You will help MANY readers with this post. Thank you!!!

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100 Claire April 26, 2011

Thank you so much.

By the way, ”chia” is the Mayan word for strength :-)
I just found out and thought I would add this in case you didn’t know!

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101 Lindsay @ The Reluctant Runner April 26, 2011

I love this post! I have struggled with disordered eating as long as I can remember (emotional binging when I was a teenager, starving myself when I was in my early 20’s, and then a combination of the two until about a year ago). I’m working really hard to figure out how to just eat like a normal person, and you blog is a wonderful reminder that it is possible!

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102 Nora April 26, 2011

Thank you so much for taking the time to write this post and for sharing your experiences with your readers! I can’t express to you enough how helpful and uplifting this was to read. It’s good to know that now, even after suffering through your eating disorder and insecurities, you are happy and healthy and loving yourself. Gives hope to the rest of us :)

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103 lindsay April 26, 2011

Angela, thank you for opening up. This is a huge encouragement to so many of us! Thank you for taking the time to answer all these questions.
Cheers!
LC

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104 Ann @ Running With Chopstix April 26, 2011

What an amazing post. I love how positively you approach things. Growing up, my family went through lots of fad diets and I’m only recently learning more about just feeding myself well. Your daily postings and other bloggers are such strong guides for me through this process. Thanks for being a blogger :)

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105 Abby April 26, 2011

Thank you so much for sharing all of this. Your blog helps me every day! :) Even my boyfriend has started reading on occasion because he has watched me beat myself up like this for a couple of years now.

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106 Christine (The Raw Project) April 26, 2011

Wonderful post, thank you for sharing such amazing information about your recovery. Great points on binge eating.

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107 Stefanie April 26, 2011

This is a great and informative post. Thank you for repling to all of the questions.

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108 Jenn April 26, 2011

Wow, Way to go Angela! Thank you so much for your informative feedback! I truly appreciate the time, effort and honesty that went into this post. I have gotten some great inspiration and tips that i’m sure will help very much! This gives me such hope and encouragment to progress towards my healthy journey instead of focusing just on the destination!

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109 Lauren April 26, 2011

Thanks for such an honest, helpful post! It’s so awesome to read about your journey and how it’s possible to have a positive outlook towards food. I suffered from restrictive eating for a few years, and I find myself calorie counting in my head, and this post definitely helps!

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110 Marisa April 26, 2011

I have been reading your blog since December and have never commented. However, this post was so beautifully written and so touching, I felt compelled to comment. Thank you for your insight and honesty. You are such a positive and inspiring woman.

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111 Steph April 26, 2011

An inspiring post, as always, Angela — thank you. I have a comment on the question about unexpectedly losing appetite or not being hungry when anticipated: I noticed this at points during my troubled eating, but now that I’m eating healthily I recognize that this usually happened when I had been on an irregular eating schedule — trying to skip meals, then eating huge ones, etc. I know know that it was my body’s way to try to SURVIVE: it was thinking, “Food seems to be scarce sometimes, so if there isn’t any food available [i.e., I was skipping meals] then I guess I’ll stop sending hunger signals — there’s no use!” Usually I would get majorly hungry later and overeat, so it was a bad scene. Now that I expect to eat three good, healthy meals a day, and maybe a small snack or two in between, I don’t have any problem with “mysterious hunger” or “mysterious non-hunger” — my body knows that it’s mealtime and it’s HUNGRY!! I firmly believe that other bodies too can conform to a schedule like this (speaking from the experience of several years of 8-week camping trips with a large group, all of us on the same eating schedule!), so if you have trouble with this as I did, take heart. Working on a healthy, REGULAR eating schedule really can help.

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112 Zoe April 26, 2011

Thank you so much for this post. I was logging onto your website today to send you an email containing almost every single question you answered above. I am still actively trying to recover from my ED and look to you for inspiration. It is so nice to see someone who seems happy and isn’t afraid to talk about these issues. I strive to create my own balance in my life, not exactly as you have, but similar in intent.

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113 Ashley April 26, 2011

great post! I feel like I now have the tools to help me establish new patterns of thinking about food. I especially like how everything you mentioned is centered around positive energy, positive responses. You are so very wise, and a blessing to us all! thank you love!
on a side note, have you ever watched the dog whisperer??
he is all about the energy you project, and he teaches that staying positive/calm is the key to happy healthy relationships with your pets and with people alike… and that positive healthy energy has to come from within ;)
anyways, i think its brilliant, and i absolutely loved this post.

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114 Delaney April 26, 2011

Thanks for the beautiful post, Angela! This was just the day I needed some words of inspiration! My life seems to be in a tailspin, and my love/hate relationship with food only makes it more difficult. I’m about a year out from recovering from anorexia, and since then I’ve dealt with binge eating, which is really emberassing and hard to get a grip on, as well. I can totally relate to the feeling that “I might never eat normally again”. I struggle with this every day of my life, and I know I still have a long way to go, but the end of your post was so hopeful, like a light at the end of the tunnel. It literally brought tears to my eyes. I’m ready to be healthy and happy NOW. Thank you! :)

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115 Char April 26, 2011

Thank you, thank you, thank you for answering my question! You really are an inspiration and real – I really enjoy that!

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116 Tara @ trulysimplebits April 26, 2011

This was a fantastic post. Thanks so much for sharing your journey. I know you have benefited many readers along the way. Love these types of posts thanks so much :)

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117 Hannah April 26, 2011

Thank you so much for your insight. I’ve been struggling with various eating disorders, and I’m really trying to recover. Everyday it’s difficult, but you really offer a lot of encouragement and hope. I’ve been reading your blog for several months, and this has been my favorite post so far. Keep sharing your thoughts – it clearly resonates with a lot of people.

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118 Angel7 April 26, 2011

Thanks for taking the time to post all of this :)

I love where you said, ‘How can I be happy NOW?’ You could not have said it any better! That is what I want my motto to be–to live each day as if it were my last, and smile while I am at it!

http://faithfulsolutions.blogspot.com/

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119 Michele Sparrow April 26, 2011

Angela, this is a beautiful post. Something that struck me while reading through your post in its entirety is how well you know yourself. This is no small feat: to know oneself. It is lovely to see how much time you have put into this post for the sake of those who are following your blog. You are clearly such an inspiration for those who struggle in the same ways. I think what impresses me the most about your change is your realization that to fail is part of overcoming anything as a human being. It is the getting up and starting again with a light heart that keeps you fighting the fight. Not that you need me to say it, but…Bravo! You are truly an inspiration and an example of humble accomplishment!

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120 Adina@Adiventures April 26, 2011

Wow, Angela, I couldn’t have asked for a post like this to come at a better time! Thank you for putting this out there, being vulnerable and showing us that we all go through these struggles. You have such a healthy perspective on food/weight/self, and your constant reminders help me to keep a healthy perspective of my own.
Today, this post helped me to feel OKAY with meeting my full meal plan (for recovery), something I have needed to do for a long time.
Of all the negative influences and voices around me swaying me towards Ed thoughts/behaviors, your post was a light that helped me do what is right for ME.
Thank you

I’m putting a link to this on my blog.

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121 Katie April 26, 2011

Thanks for the helpful and inspiring post, Angela!

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122 Kari @ bite-sized thoughts April 26, 2011

Thank you :) For taking the time to share, for being prepared to share, for being so honest, and for expressing things so well. One of the things I love about your blog (and there are many!) is that you radiate health and fitness. I know no one is happy all the time, or feels their best all the time, but your overall approach and lifestyle clearly work – and they come across as balanced, healthy and fun. There are no extremes and no all or nothings!

I also know that things haven’t always been that way – this post highlights just how much has changed, and how hard you have worked to get to where you are today – and it’s always incredibly refreshing to read your words and see your pictures and soak up the glow :)

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123 Dalai Lina April 26, 2011

I love your honesty and openness. You are an inspiration!

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124 Azra April 27, 2011

You are truly an inspiration! I loved your post, so honest and full of helpful tips.

On the other matter – I have a question about your pumpkin/brownie cupcake. I have guests coming over this Friday and I wanted to make your cupcake but I live in Jerusalem at the moment and can’t seem to find canned pumpkin anywhere, what can I use as a substitute? Also, I often have questions about your recipes (I love them all!), is it ok if I send them to you and should I use the comments page for that? Thanks!!

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125 Angela (Oh She Glows) April 27, 2011

Hmmm I’m not sure if you could sub anything for the canned pumpkin…can you make purreed sweet potato? Im not sure if that would work.

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126 Greta April 27, 2011

Such an inspiring post…!

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127 Megan@Dirty Dishes Daily April 27, 2011

Great Post!! I am 26 years old now and I have been battle an eating disorder for 13 years now. After much help I have finally found balance in my life and I still stuggle though. I know that I will have disordered eating moments now and again but I feel cofident I will overcome.

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128 Hayley @ Oat Couture April 27, 2011

Great post! I love your ‘take-away message’! Always focus on how to be happy exactly as you are, in that moment (In every moment!) :) A bit of an issue for me and something I constantly have to work on! Its so true we should never knowingly postpone happiness! Such a waste! Enjoy the journey people!! Many thanks for the early morning inspiration! :)

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129 Raewyn April 27, 2011

Angela, thank you so much for your beautiful post and for sharing with us! I love reading your blog not only because of your amazingly scrumptious recipes but your funny, sweet personality and passion that shines through your words! I always feel like I’m visiting my cool Aunt or awesome friend! :) Thanks so much for helping inspire us to find our Glow….and be the best US we can be!

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130 Christin April 27, 2011

You are wonderful! Thank you so much for that great article!!
Beautiful day, Christine

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131 Jessy April 27, 2011

What a great post, you’re amazing for putting so much effort into this!

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132 Pearl (Crunch and Chew) April 27, 2011

What a wonderful post, and thank you! I haven’t been having such a good week but reading this has definitely lifted my spirits.

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133 kaila @ healthy helper! April 27, 2011

Beautiful words and completely inspiring as always! Thank you angela!

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134 Pure2raw twins April 27, 2011

I need to print off this post and read it everyday. I have been struggling again with “trying to be healthy” and staying positive. I notice some of my old eating disorder habits are coming back (obsessing, etc), mainly because I was told from my doctor I have candida and need to watch what I eat. But as I started researching what I can eat, everywhere says something different. ugh Anyways after talking with friends (Gena, helped a lot) I realized I just need to find what works for me and what makes me feel good. It is hard not to fall into eating traps, but thank goodness for people like you that remind me to be strong. Allow for freedom! Thanks for writing this post!

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135 Christine @ Burning It Off April 27, 2011

Thanks for taking the time to write this. I know it can’t be easy being so open and honest about your experiences, but just know that your insights and advice are helpful to a lot of people. :)

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136 Kristin (Cook, Bake, Nibble) April 27, 2011

What an incredible post- amazing advice. You have come so far, we all have so much to learn from your incredible wisdom. Thank you SO much for sharing this. You have helped me and so many others. Love you!!!

xo

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137 Alisuchi April 27, 2011

Do you ever go a while without eating, but don’t end up feeling hungry when you normally would? When this happens to me, I don’t know whether to eat or not eat. I feel like I SHOULD eat, because I don’t like to skip meals, but I also feel like my body would tell me to eat if it really needed to. What causes hunger signals to go away? Do you have any tricks to keeping your appetite on a steady schedule? (I suppose this partially relates to being intuitive.)

My appetite isn’t always on a “schedule” either, but I definitely don’t like to force myself to eat a meal when I’m not hungry. What I’ll usually do in this case, say if it’s 3 pm and I haven’t wanted lunch, or I have to run to my office in the afternoon but am not hungry before I go, is just have something small, like a yourt, fruit, whatever. This way when I finally am hungry, I won’t be ravenous because my body hasn’t had anything for hours. I have IBS as well, and use this strategy too when my stomach is acting up and the idea of eating a full meal is unappealing. When you really and truly are not hungry or the idea of eating pretty much anything doesn’t sound good, I think we should listen because the message is being sent for a reason. I had a hard time with this one, because I really like to eat, and was always annoyed, like “hey body, it’s dinner time, let’s get hungry!” :D Now I try to be more relaxed about it, cause I know whenever I’m hungry, I can eat whatever I really want, plus it will be more satisfying! Sorry for the novel, but hope this helps!

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138 Kate April 27, 2011

Thank you so much for sharing so honestly! I battled an eating disorder for many years..and I was a vegetarian during much of that time – a vegetarian who subsisted on diet coke, Marlboro lights, the occasional M&M, and very few vegetables;) It’s funny – in the beginning stages of recovery, I couldn’t make any foods “off-limits” – but I am finding more and more that my intuition and listening to my body’s wisdom leads me to a mostly vegan way of eating…I’m not too worried about what label I have anymore…but I do love your site:)

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139 Sarah April 27, 2011

There are so many parts of this post I found so helpful and encouraging. I’m excited because I feel like it IS possible for me to be completely healthy through this pregnancy and even after. It IS possible for me to find freedom from food obsessions.
Thank you so much for using the time and the heart to write this.

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140 Kelsey April 27, 2011

Thank you so much for this post. I’m currently in recovery from a binge eating disorder and it is so encouraging to hear how you have recovered… I CAN do this. Not restricting is so scary but it is a huge part of recovery and it is so great to see living proof that it is possible to not restrict and not gain a ton of weight (my biggest fear). I read your blog all the time but I was especially blessed by this post. Thanks Angela. You are such an inspiration.

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141 Nicole @ Of Cookies and Carrots April 27, 2011

I cannot even express how wonderful this entire post was and how much it was needed for me AT THSI VERY MOMENT. I’m really struggling with my body image and body acceptance after a history riddled with periods of semi-restriction, and regaining some weight in the past few months (I lost a lot of weight in the fall due to stress to the point that it was unhealthy). I’m incredibly uncomfortable with my weight gain and keep oscillating between eating too much and too little and I truly want to stop thinking about it, and stop berating myself in my head for being ‘too fat” when realistically I’m not.

Anyways, thank you. I’m considering printing this and reading it daily ;)
<3
n

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142 Whitney April 27, 2011

Incredible post… absolutely inspiring and insightful.

I have a lot to think about now today and everyday. I am battling my desires to continue to calorie-count and track and push myself more and more to some extreme level of fitness, and a desire to live and LET GO… just “be free” as you say, not struggle anymore. I’m so terrified of failing with my “intuition” and gaining back the weight I worked so hard to lose (healthily, mind you– I was overweight, insecure, and oblivious to my food or exercise before now). I need to let go of my concern with NUMBERS and focus on a concern with happiness and health.

THANK YOU! Keep changing the world, one blog at a time, Angela!

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143 J April 27, 2011

Thanks for this post. I started seeking treatment for bulimia a month ago, and am still in recovery. I recommend if you are struggling with an ED to seek some help, and read inspirational blogs such as this one. I also recommend reading “Overcoming Binge Eating” by Christopher Fairburn if you are considering starting to overcome your ED. I think reading “real-life” examples, such as yours, helps those on the road to recovery and helps us to connect. I also enjoy reading all the comments and seeing how you have inspired so many girls out there.

My counselor keeps telling me this “is one of the hardest things I’ll ever do”, and trust me, it’s quite challenging especially with the old habits and the emotional ups and downs. I think it would help people that don’t know where to start- if you had a “help” section for those considering treatments- ie. recommended doctors and books to help people through EDs.

I can’t wait until I’m at the point you are at, Angela. Thank you for sharing this.

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144 J April 27, 2011

Thank you for posting this. It’s always nice to read someone’s first-hand experience rather than reading a textbook or only getting the opinion of a doctor.

I have recently started seeing a counselor to overcome bulimia. I’m only a month in and have only had one binge/purge. She recommended I read “Overcoming Binge Eating” by Christopher Fairburn – thought it was a great read and highly recommend to anyone seeking help.

I think it would be great if you had a “help” section with recommended books and doctors for those that don’t know where to start. I tried to overcome this on my own, but realized I needed professional help. I’m so glad I initiated it, and can’t wait to get to the point you’re at :) You’re a great inspiration.

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145 Deanna April 27, 2011

I can’t even begin to tell you how inspiring your blog has become to me. It started with me drooling over the wonderful food pictures you post with your recipes….then I began trying them (the lentil salad is currently my favorite). I obviously subscribed to your blog and after reading this, you have truly given me the courage to accept the fact that I have an ED. You will be the first (second after myself) that I have openly admitted this to. The binge-starve cycle has been my life for as long as I can remember and I am now 34 years old. Reading this was like reading excerpts from my own life. I have really taken to heart what you have said. I have already removed my scale from the bathroom, to which I was using to weigh myself about 5 times a day. Thank you for writing this. Thank you for the personal stories you share and the wonderful, creative and truly delicious recipes you share.

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146 Paula April 27, 2011

First of all, I just want to thank you for your bravery in talking about this stuff. When we struggle we tend to feel isolated, but talking about it and knowing so many women have gone through (are going through!) the same thing and connecting with them is monumentally healing!

I also have 2 cents I’d like to add ;)

1st cent: along the same vein as what I wrote above, it is SO helpful to connect with people who have/are experiencing the same difficulties. I HIGHLY recommend Overeaters Anonymous to anyone who’s ED manifests with compulsive overeating, binge eating or even just an acknowledged unhealthy relationship with food where it is used as a crutch as a way to hide from and numb pain and negative emotions. OA was instrumental in my recovery process.

2nd cent: As to the question about lack of appetite and skipping meals or eating when not hungry. I think it is so important to listen to the body and get tuned into how you feel (mentally AND physically!) and how foods, activities, and thoughts affect how you feel. For me, I know my lack of appetite was due to insulin resistance and low thyroid function. These conditions are extremely common and the symptoms are almost always attributed to something else. If you have no appetite your body is telling you it can’t handle anymore food right now! For example, with insulin resistance there is too much glucose and insulin floating around in your blood and your cells are having a really hard time using it all up yet you’re not hungry because your body does not need any more glucose! However, it is important to nourish the body. We need amino acids from protein, (healthy!) carbs and fats, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, enzymes, etc. to support the healing process. SO, with that said, what I did, (once I had the ED mostly under control and was committed to the healing process) is I still ate at regular intervals, very small nutrition packed meals even though I wasn’t hungry. What I discovered after about a week and a half is that I began to feel hungry again and I wasn’t eating just to eat but to satisfy hunger! Such a great feeling! and a sign that my body was healing :)

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147 Julia April 27, 2011

Thank you for this post! It’s extremely inspirational and I have a feeling I will be reading it often.

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148 VEGirl April 27, 2011

Angela,

It means so much to me that you posted this and gave us this great treasure trove of insight and inspiration :). Currently at 15, I have struggled with disordered eating and depression, until my parents stepped in and took action just months ago. I have been reading your blog for months now, never commenting (though it’s high time I should!), and you outlook on life is so inspiring and helps me in the internal battle I am waging.

For me, you are a model of how one can turn the tides and be… well, happy! Thank you so much for all that you do, and I hope your flu feels better soon.

VEGirl

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149 Leslie Paquette April 27, 2011

Thank you! I really took away a lot from this post that mirrors my current situation. The power of the mind is incredible!

By the way, I made my first Green Monster today and it was delicious!! ~Leslie

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150 Katiie April 27, 2011

Hi,
I’d just like to say that I tried a green monster one day (modified slightly) and was SUPER scared to try it, but you were right, I couldnt taste the spinach at all! (Even my veryveryvery skeptical Dad thought it was delicious!) :)
As well, this post is very helpful, thank you!
I’m sort of in the later stages of recovering from, well some sort of eating disorder I’m not surewhat I could classify it as. (perhaps orthorexia AND anorexia?)
and I was wondering, how do I get over the fact that I am SUPPOSED to be gaining weight? Because I make an effort to eat energy-dense foods, etc (I’m vegetarian though) and then when I see the scale rise it still freaks me out! How should I handle that?
Thank you :)

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151 Angela (Oh She Glows) April 29, 2011

My advice is not to weigh yourself. :) I know it’s hard but it really helps the situation!

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152 Angie April 28, 2011

Thank you so much for this post and all of the posts re: your experiences related to ED and healthy living. I know your passion for creating healthy vegan recipes, but it’s the postings on how to have found a life outside of the ED that really change my life and encourage me to continue recovery. I know you have talked about writing a book – I can only hope you get to write about your life and how you have found recovery. Everything you have discussed re: finding healthy places with your weight, size, food, exercise, relationships, etc. has had such a positive impact on me. Many thanks :) Angie

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153 Shayla April 28, 2011

Love love this post Angela, you are such an inspiration and I can relate to everything you’ve written. I have gone through the same struggles with my ED and am finally in a happier place….your blog helped me get there and see the light. I’m now about 12 lbs. heavier from my “restrictive” weight, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I’m so much happier and I’ve accepted this is where my body wants to be and I can finally say I’m at my “happy” weight. You’re posts are so inspirational I’ve forwarded a lot of them to my sister whose been struggling the same way too. It’s a work in progress, but it’s helping and she finds you truly inspiring :)

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154 Sarah April 28, 2011

I love this post. It’s so thorough! I, too, have struggled with an eating disorder and in the last year have finally found myself firmly in recovery. I want to echo what you have said here–it IS a choice, and there will be moments when you have to sit with some really uncomfortable feelings as a result of that choice. But keep going! Recovery is totally worth it.

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155 Jessica April 28, 2011

Angela,

I love that you don’t weight yourself–I think that’s so great! I was wondering how you handled doctor’s visits, etc. where you have to weight yourself. Often, I’ll avoid going to the doctor because I hate the idea of being weighed. I keep track at home, but the scale at the doc always reads higher and my disordered thinking has me nearly terrified of what I might weight. I am at a healthy weight for myself, my happy weight actually, but I’m always scared that being “fat” again is just around the corner. Any advice for me on the doctor’s office weigh-in?

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156 Cassandra April 29, 2011

I think your message of choosing freedom over the battleground can apply to so much, for anyone. I have been *loving* your blog, and a lot of my friends and I all talk about your amazing food and positive message (and how much it is needed, since the Internet can be a bitter place sometimes!). Thank you so much!

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157 Sarah April 29, 2011

Hi Angela, I was wondering if you had any advice on knowing when you’re full. I know that what helped stop your binge-starve cycle was eating when your hungry and stopping when you’re full. Lately I’ve been struggling with my hunger cues and when to stop. I keep ending up missing my hunger cues, then I realize I’m too hungry, eat too much, and can’t tell I’m full till it’s too late. Any suggestions?

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158 Angela (Oh She Glows) April 29, 2011

Hey Sarah, For me it was really hard at first to know when I was hungry. I was so used to eating because I have ‘x’ calories allotted for a meal. It took me almost a year to stop thinking about calories and to truly embrace hunger signals. Ive heard that many people benefit from seeing a RD when dealing with these issues. Sometimes a semi-structured schedule or plan can help until you are on your way.

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159 Ali April 29, 2011

Thank you for being so honest. It’s hard, especially on low days, to fall into the bad habits of negative thoughts, food as something to control and self-doubt. That said, knowing that even one other woman has been here, and found a more positive path, is incredibly reassuring and inspiring. Thank you for being so brave to share with us.

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160 Vivianne April 30, 2011

Over-Indulging & Slip-Ups – I loved loved this section. This is the area where I struggle the most. I’m always getting upset with myself after I have a bad eating day (or week as was the case most recently). I punish myself and let it get me down for days. I am working to stop this cycle and I really like your suggestion that you gave!

I’m also in therapy and I have found that for me, it has helped immensely. I loved this post, and I love love love your blog. You are so inspiring. You’re inspiring because you are open, honest, and genuine. (: <3

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161 megan @ the oatmeal diaries May 1, 2011

Thank you for yet another amazingly inspiring post. I love it!!!

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162 Lindsey May 4, 2011

Thank you so much for this post! I’ve come a long way and one day I hope to be at peace with my body as much as you are. Your blog always makes me feel inspired and hopeful! Thank you for sharing your story. I love your recipes too!

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163 Natalie May 4, 2011

This is a really great post. I can relate to all of the questions you answered. I’m 18 years old, recently recovering from a mild eating disorder and it’s really inspirational knowing that there are other people out there who think and act the way I do and I am not alone. Thanks :)

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164 Vegan Radhika Sarohia December 13, 2012

My eighteen months late reply to say along with everyone else that is a terrific post!
It will help lots of people :)
I’m currently on a low-carb low-fat diet along with being vegan but I don’t seem to have gone crazy with it yet [will come back to this post when I do! haha]
This foods and eating disorder business is so difficult, I really sympathize with people who struggle with it…good luck to all!!!!!! And Merry Christmas

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165 Nora May 29, 2013

I just read this post and it made me reeeeeally confident about my path of recovery. I’m suffering from anorexia for three years now with a binge sub type starting last summer.
I did try to restrict myself more and more when my binges started as well, but obviously that didn’t work.
Last month I decided it was time to worry about becoming happy and not skeletal again and I too put my scales out of my bathroom and I am trying the “one treat a day” strategy as well because it’s far easier not to binge when you now that there is nothing you can’t do or rather don’t allow yourself to.
I’m still falling back in my binge-starve cycle every now and then (like at the moment >.<) but reading your post reinforced me that the part I'm taking is the right one and that one time I'll find myself in such a positive place as you do. Still with ups and downs, but that's how life goes. And hard times do make us appreciate the easy ones even more.
All the best to you and your further path in life,
Nora

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166 Marika June 18, 2013

Hi Angela,
Thank you so much for creating this website and for truly being honest about your past struggles with eating disorders as well as your current successes with staying healthy, fit and happy. It really speaks to young women all over that have also had distresses related with food and body image, and on behalf of everyone currently struggling I would like to give you a real thank you. You are an inspiration and are truly amazing. It is not easy whatsoever to do what you do; it takes a really strong person to open up to this sensitive subject that has been troubling girls and women for years.
I am a 17 year old girl, a ballet dancer, that has been struggling with eating and the pressure to be thin not only coming from the profession, but from having a very strict type-A personality, meaning that I need to control everything in my life as well. Whenever there was something going wrong and I felt as though I wasn’t totally in control over the situation, I would turn to restricting my eating, which eventually resulted in very serious ankle injuries, hurting my dancing both physically as well as my drive for continuing to pursue my goals. Reading your blog has truly helped me to start focusing more on being healthy so that I CAN dance, not thin and rail to the point of exhaustion, preventing me from doing what I love and eventually hurting myself down the road. Your kind words and story are truly inspiring and for this I would like to applaud you for everything you do!
Thanks a million :)

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167 Angela (Oh She Glows) June 18, 2013

Hey Marika, Thank you so much for this lovely comment! I appreciate it so much. I’m sorry to hear about your struggles and I wish you all the best with overcoming them! (hugs)

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168 Nausheen October 5, 2013

Thank you for such a beautiful post. I m currently in recovery and I loved everything.

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169 Jenn Fitzgerald October 22, 2013

Dear Angela,

I have just read your ‘A Grain of Salt Piece’ and it really struck a cord with me. I have suffered and do suffer from a negative body image and sometimes I don’t realise how much of an impact it has on my feelings and behaviours. Last year I undertook Cognative Behvioural Therapy which turned my life around and made me realise how much of a hard time I give myself day-in-day-out, nothing is ever good enough, although people often tell me I’ve achieved something great I don’t let these thought absord and seems to let the negative throughts dictate what I do. I am aware of it now and it is a constant process of trying to stop bad habits and thoughts, some days are better than others. I love to read your website as it is so positive and inspiring, especially on those days when I am in need of some inspiration.

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170 Brittany June 16, 2014

I want to thank you so much, from the very bottom of my heart, for being so open with your journey. Reading the posts on your blog is helping me more than you’ll ever know. I am 20 years old and have lost over 100 pounds since I was the age of 16. After this extreme weight loss, I found myself with an eating disorder after losing a little too much weight and feeling sick all the time. After finally admitting to myself that I had taken it too far, I saw a cognitive behavioral therapist, which helped quite a bit in my recovery. Now, a few months later, I’m trying to learn how to truly live again after a life of restriction and obsession.

Your blog has helped so much to show me that obsessing over calories is not a rewarding way to live, and that focusing on nutrient-dense foods that make me feel good is a much more fulfilling experience. Thank you so much again for being so open and honest. You are truly helping me continue to improve my relationship with food as I learn how to live again.

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171 A July 3, 2014

I’ve read through this a few times already and will probably read it a few times again. Thank you so much. I think the hardest part for me is wanting to recover, wanting to feel better and make a positive difference. You’ve pushed me in the right direction. Thank you.

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172 Masha October 2, 2014

Dear Angela I just want to thank you for creating this ABSOLUTELY AMAZING blog. I came across it while in the midst of feeling the exact same way you describe in your post above. You brought back life into me. I now feel extremely inspired and trying my best to stay motivated by referring here every time. By sharing your life stories and your delicious recipes ;) you inspire others to better themselves and feel complete. You are a true blessing!!!. Thank you very much!!!!

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173 Angela (Oh She Glows) October 3, 2014

Thank you for your kind words Masha! :)

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174 Kayla October 21, 2014

Angela,
I wanted to let you know that yesterday I took a huge step in sharing my own story with “ED”, and I believe a big reason for that is in thanks to you! Reading your story helped me to realize that I needed to get help myself. Seeing a therapist was life-changing and I couldn’t be more grateful to the experience & how it has helped me. If you have a minute, you can read my story here – http://healthyalamode.com/2014/10/youre-not-skinny-enough-to-have-an-eating-disorder/ – but either way, I just wanted to share my deepest thanks for being authentic and vulnerable; and helping me to realize the freedom it could also bring to my life!
Kayla

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175 Angela (Oh She Glows) October 21, 2014

Hey Kayla, Thank you so much for sharing! I’m off to check out your post :)

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